Most mascots are gross representations of the actual image that a school embodies. you could also say that mascots are just extreme caricatures of the animal/person/thing they are supposed to represent. Never the less, they're supposed to be over the top, zany, silly geese who's sole purpose is to entertain those who aren't enjoying the event at hand. I was thinking on the subject matter (probably when I was supposed to be either: a) Doing something important; b) Listening to my chick say something that I'm supposed to remember in the future.) and came to the conclusion that most schools tend to get a little carried away with what their mascots and it gets worse each and every year.
This is what I bring to you. A Peter Jennings-esque in depth report on the terror known as "Gross Caricaturization" that is sweeping our nation. Whether you are a Bull Dawg , a War Hawk, a Bronco, or a... a... Hurricane... or... uh... Wolfpack. Whatever you are, I'm gunning for you, son.
It's not that hard to just have a normal looking mascot. We here at Clemson have a normal mascot. A tiger, granted it's generic mascot we don't get out of control. It doesn't have a crazy name, or terribly misshapen mongoloid head. It has the colors and designs that a normal tiger in the wild would have. He doesn't have a crazy tail or over sized appendages and/or digits. He's just a normal, functioning tiger that's not too much and not too little. Unfortunately, he does have a counterpart but thankfully it's not a "Mrs. Tiger" and on a positive note I've heard the Tiger Cub is in the process of being phased out. We'll conquer that hill another day.
Given the fact that we play them this week, I thought I'd take a stab at the Wake Forest Demon Deacon. Let's take a brief look at the damage we have to assess here:
Let's cover the basics:
- Mongoloid head that we mentioned earlier - Check
- Grotesque features - Check
- Over the top costume - Check
- Crazy name - Check
Now, I'm assuming the university made up this mascot sometime in the 30's, 40's, or 50's... sometime back in the hey day. Granted, back then the thought of an ornery chaplain in the service of the devil must have been a terrifying thought. Now, mascots are supposed to be kid friendly... what's more opposite of kid friendly than a old man with crazy hair and a mean streak.
On to the appearance. That head is CRAZY big. Dude's sideburns are almost into his mouth. When's the last time you saw an old man and he was all scraggly bearded etc? This guy just looks like an old Stones roadie with a funky funeral parlor suit and a meth addiction. This guy has to have roots in Poland, I mean the chin? That big ugly nose? The bald head? Sorry to all our Pollack readers out there, but this guy is a bird of the same feather.
All around a great mascot that is timelessly frightening. I guess the biggest let down is you can't really do the trampoline basketball dunk with this costume because of the humongous head. Of course, I guess if it were just a normal old man it wouldn't really be that good of a mascot. It'd just be like the West Virginia Mountaineer. Except older. And he wouldn't wield an axe. And he wouldn't be drunk.